As we leave winter behind and Mother Nature starts to show signs and the promise of spring, our spirits are raised. At Knockderry, we are looking forward to some of the local activities and events.
As the days become warmer and nights shorter, animals start to emerge from hibernation, flowers come into bloom and nature feels re-energised. All around us, the birds will be busy nest building and you’ll hear the soft hum of insects – be sure to keep an eye out for magnificent butterflies and hardworking bees.
Woodland walks are incredibly beautiful at this time of year, snowdrops make way for bluebells and there is birdsong all around. Here at Knockderry we are spoilt for choice when it comes to great walking trails. A favourite walk of ours is in Ardgarten. There are a couple of different routes to choose from, but the riverside trail takes you along the shores of Loch Long where you may catch a glimpse of an otter or two.
In fact, it is not uncommon to see all kinds of wildlife whilst walking in the woods. Keep your eyes open for red squirrels, deer, buzzards and other winged friends. As walking trails can often have sections of uneven ground, mud or changes in gradient we would always recommend that you choose sturdy footwear – but always remember your camera!
If you enjoy cycling, we recommend many of the routes around Ardgartan and Arrochar. These cycling trails range from challenging 20-milers to a more leisurely 5 mile loop. All routes give cyclists access to stunning scenery and breathtaking views. Take a look at the Forestry Commission Scotland website for more information about walking and cycling.
Spring is a wonderful time of year. Visitor centres and local attractions reopen and there is plenty to see and do around our local area. We are looking forward to the 1st and 2nd April and ‘Springfest’, the Scottish Food and Drink Festival held on the shores of Loch Lomond. In May, there is also the Loch Fyne Food Fair which takes place in the fields around the head of the loch. Don’t miss these opportunities to sample Scottish food, local wine, music and entertainment for all the family.
If you are a keen gardener looking for some inspiration, spring is also a great time of year to visit local botanical gardens. Linn Botanic Gardens is just a short walk from Knockderry and has great vantage points from which to view the plantings. Notable collections include ferns, bamboos, Magnolias and Rhododendrons. On a larger scale and around an hours drive from us is Benmore Botanic Gardens where there are 120 acres of woodland and floral areas to be explored. Welcomed by an impressive avenue of Giant Redwoods, visitors can wander through world-famous collections from North and South America, the Orient and the Himalayas. It’s a truly amazing place for a great day out.
So, ignore the jokes about the Scottish weather. Spring in Scotland is beautiful. Clean, fresh air, magnificent scenery, great food and always a warm welcome. Come and discover a few of our best kept secrets and make Scotland your favourite springtime destination.